For centuries the natural life of the British Isles has captured the imagination of both artists and scientists. The Art of British Natural History explores the many different ways in which Britain's flora and fauna have been documented, from engravings and watercolours to ink and charcoal drawings. The Art of British Natural History is illustrated with over 100 specially selected artworks from the collections of the Natural History Museum's Library and Archives. Together these images span 300 years of British history and include the works of major figures such as William MacGillivray, Moses Harris, Edward Wilson and Ernest Mansell. Andrea Hart's accompanying essay reveals that these images are both beautiful to look at and have also played a crucial role in advancing scientific knowledge in Britain. She also traces how these images have influenced the history of printing, art, and popular culture.
Andrea Hart is the Special Collections Manager at the Natural History Museum where she has worked for nearly 20 years. Andrea has wide experience of all of the subject collections in the library, having worked on their curation, research, conservation, development and outreach. For eight years she was specifically responsible for the Botany Library collections which include impressive original artworks, rare books and manuscript collections. She is the author of Women Artists, another book in the Images of Nature series.
The Library of the Natural History Museum is a repository for one of the most exciting and comprehensive collections of natural history literature and artworks to be found anywhere in the world. It holds Britain's largest collection of natural history artworks on paper representing many of the great natural history artists along with many thousands of books, including some richly illustrated volumes of great historical significance.